Junior dos Santos Argues UFC 256 Loss Was Due To Illegal Strike

Junior dos Santos isn’t accepting his loss to Ciryl Gane at UFC 256.

On December 12, dos Santos and Gane shared the Octagon in the main card opener for UFC 256. In the opening frame, dos Santos was dropped with an elbow and Gane followed up with strikes to seal the deal. The argument dos Santos made was that the elbow landed on the back of the head. The official ruling is that the strike was clean behind the ear.

During an interview with MMAFighting.com, dos Santos made it clear that he doesn’t agree that Gane’s strike was legal.

“That’s not the only point, that was the athletic commission’s argument. They said it also connected to the ear so it’s valid, but it was his forearm, closer to the hand, that hit my ear, but the elbow connected exactly to the back to my head. I went out for a few seconds and when I came back it already was too late. I felt that pain in the head and looked to the big screen, where I saw the replay of the movement and it landing exactly to the back to the head.

“People saying I turned my head, to me, is absurd. I already was sideways, he was kind of holding me in that position for about 10 seconds, so when he threw the elbow—I don’t think it was intentional, he didn’t mean to land the elbow to the back of my head, I don’t think that, but it doesn’t make it legal. ‘Oh, I turned my head and whatever.’ That doesn’t make the strike not illegal.”

For dos Santos, he now falls to 21-9. He has lost four bouts in a row. “Cigano” hasn’t emerged victorious since March 2019. With the UFC preparing for a wave of roster cuts, many wonder if dos Santos will be let go.

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